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Tuesday, December 31, 2013

2014 Is Right around the Corner!

Time to start thinking about resolutions. Almost every year I post a list of diet and exercise books that we'd received over the year. This year, I'm not going to do that. This year I'm going to post titles of materials that help you to accept yourself whatever shape you are in! Resolve to do it!

Campos, Paul F. The Obesity Myth: Why America's Obsession with weight is hazardous to your health. [616.398 CAM]

Goldman, Leslie. Locker Room Diaries: The Naked Truth about Women, Body Image, and Re-Imagining the "Perfect" Body. [306.4 GOL]

Kirberger, Kimberly. No Body's Perfect: Stories by Teens about Body Image, Self-Acceptance, and the Search for Identity. [YA 158.1 KIR]

Pope, Harrison. The Adonis Complex: The Secret Crisis of Male Body Obsession. [155.3 POP]

Redd, Nancy Amanda. Body Drama: Real Girls, Real Bodies, Real Issues, Real Answers. [YA 612 RED]

Weiner, Jessica. Do I Look Fat in This?: Life Doesn't Begin Five Pounds from Now. [306.4613 WEI]

Monday, December 30, 2013

Endangered Species Act

On the 28th of December, 1973, the Endangered Species Act was signed into law by President Richard Nixon. For a fact sheet about the act, click here.

New Hampshire has a number of endangered and threatened animals and plants. You can click on the species name which will take you to another page where you can find a map and links to other resources.

The numbers on the list of threatened and endangered species are fluid. Some species may come off and others may come on. It is always encouraging when a species is able to make a comeback and be removed from the list. The Eagles Are Back by Jean Craighead George [J 598.942 GEO] is the story of the Bald eagle which is one of the success stories that can be attributed to the Endangered Species Act. The Bald eagle is now "delisted."

NH Fish and Game have been monitoring the Bald eagle population in our state since 1980. Read more here.

Friday, December 27, 2013

Poetry Friday--"The Life of Others"

2013 is drawing to a close, and on this, the last Poetry Friday of the year, I want to wish everyone peace and justice in the coming year. (If the world has one, surely it will have the other.) Here are the words of Denise Levertov to give us something to ponder:
The Life of Others

Their high pitched baying
as if in prayer's unison

remote, undistracted, given over
utterly to belief,

the skein of geese
voyages south,
       hierarchic arrow of its convergence toward
       the point of grace
swinging and rippling, ribbon tail
of a kite, loftily

over lakes they they have not
elected to rest,

over men who suppose
earth is man's, over golden earth

preparing itself
for night and winter.
                            We humans
are smaller than they, and crawl

about and about the smoky map.

from Voices of Light: Spiritual and Visionary Poems by Women around the World from Ancient Sumeria to Now (edited by Aliki Barnstone) [808.81 VOI].

From here, please head over to see Mary Lee Hahn, at A Year of Reading, for the last Poetry Friday Round-Up of 2013.

"Peace and Justice" illustration by Thomas Nast.

Thursday, December 26, 2013


I'm sure everyone knows by now that the 2013 Word of the Year is "selfie."

Before the age of the cell phone camera, it's not as if there were no selfies taken, it's just that they weren't given a name. And way before the camera, there were painted selfies, otherwise known as self-portraits.

It is certainly not intentional, but animals, in this case an eagle, have been caught in the act of taking selfies!

Eagles are fascinating birds of prey that you can read more about in Eagles by [J 598.9 HAU] by Hayley Mitchell Haugen, and other books in the children's room.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Merry Christmas!

The Library is closed today. Have a happy holiday and stay safe!

Here's a little musical treat--a flash mob performance that recently took place at the Museum of Fine Arts:

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Cooking Up a Storm?

Sometimes people get caught up in the holidays and promise to cook or bake something and it turns out they have no idea how it should be done.

Since you are so busy, and probably need help right away, here are some virtual books from our 3M collection that can loaded on your ereader any time of the day or night (including Christmas Day)! All you need is your library card.

Holiday Entertaining Essentials: Party Recipes Delicious Ideas for Easy Holiday Celebrations.

Let's Talk Turkey...And All the Trimmings 100 Delicious Holiday Recipes, Tips, and Ideas from America's Top Magazines.

Macomber, Debbie. Debbie Macomber's Christmas Cookbook Favorite Recipes and Holiday Traditions from My Home to Yours.

Rodgers, Rick. Christmas 101.

Monday, December 23, 2013

'Twas the Night...

Christmas Eve is almost here! And the most famous book about the day is the classic by Clement Moore, The Night before Christmas [JP MOO]. We have quite a number of different versions, each with an illustrator's attempt to make the old classic new again. There are the stylings of the famous--Arthur Rackham, Tasha Tudor, Hilary Knight, Jan Brett--and the not so famous. And, there are a whole slew of take-offs on the original such as A Pirate's Night before Christmas by Philip Yates [JP YAT] and The Barnyard Night before Christmas by Beth Terrill [JP TER].

And new for this year, is this delightful version, illustrated only with hands and facial expressions:

Friday, December 20, 2013

Poetry Friday--Happy Winter Solstice!

Tomorrow is the first day of winter. Yes, that's right--all that snowy stuff we had in the past two weeks was autumnal weather!

In honor of the solstice, here's a very old poem from 1617:
Now Winter Nights Enlarge
by Thomas Campion

Now winter nights enlarge
The number of their hours,
And clouds their storms discharge
Upon the airy towers.
Let now the chimneys blaze,
And cups o’erflow with wine;
Let well-tuned words amaze
With harmony divine.
Now yellow waxen lights
Shall wait on honey love,
While youthful revels, masques, and courtly sights
Sleep’s leaden spells remove.

This time doth well dispense
With lovers’ long discourse;
Much speech hath some defence,
Though beauty no remorse.
All do not all things well;
Some measures comely tread,
Some knotted riddles tell,
Some poems smoothly read.
The summer hath his joys
And winter his delights;
Though love and all his pleasures are but toys,
They shorten tedious nights.
I love the little humorous twist at the end, don't you! The poem may be found in Poems to Read: A New Favorite Poem Project Anthology [808.81 POE].

This week the Poetry Friday Round-Up is at Buffy's Blog, be sure to stop by, it's her first time hosting!

Illustration from Gems of Poetry, for Girls and Boys, published by Rufus Merrill, Concord, NH, 1850.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Bucket Lists

Putting together a "bucket list," that is, a list of things one wishes to do before "kicking the bucket," is quite a popular past-time. Books of bucket lists line our shelves, books that have "before You Die," in their titles such as 1,000 Places to See before You Die by Patricia Schultz [910.202 SCH] or 1001 Books You Must Read before You Die [011.73 ONE] or 101 Action Movies You Must See before You Die [791.4365 ONE].

There's also the Hollywood film, The Bucket List [DVD BUC]. If you're not familiar with it, here's a brief description:
Corporate billionaire Edward Cole and working class mechanic Carter Chambers have nothing in common, except they both have been diagnosed with terminal illnesses. While sharing a hospital room together, they decide to make a Bucket List of all the things they have ever wanted to do before they die. In the process of completing the list, both of them heal each other, become unlikely friends, and ultimately find the joy in life.

Novelist, Dominic Smith, would have us believe that bucket lists are not just creations of 21st century people, but that others created lists in the past. Smith wrote The Mercury Visions of Louis Daguerre [F SMI], in which Louis Daguerre, a pioneer of photography, becomes poisoned by the chemicals he uses to make his daguerreotypes. He creates a "doomsday list" of ten pictures he wants to take before he dies.

To see a collection of daguerreotypes, visit the Daguerreian Society's Pinterest page.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

This Guy Is No Birdbrain!

Amazing video, isn't it? It was no accident that the crow was sliding down the rooftop!

I'll bet you didn't know we have a book on the intelligence of crows--we do! Crows: Encounters with the Wise Guys of the Avian World by Candace Savage [598.864 SAV]. We even have a Christmas book starring a crow--Merry Christmas, Merry Crow by Kathi Appelt [JP APP]. There are many, many crow books scattered throughout the Library's collections. Just search the catalog under "crows."

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Larger Than Life Art

Back in the Renaissance, Leonardo da Vinci designed a large monumental horse, which was to be cast in bronze. The casting never happened--the metal was use to make weapons instead. Jean Fritz wrote a book for children called Leonardo's Horse [J 730 FRI] which tells the story of the project, and how it was actually completed centuries later.

As you can see from the book's cover, the horse was more than larger than life, it was colossal!

Artists have often worked to create colossal pieces. Just consider the Statue of Liberty and the sculpted portraits at Mount Rushmore.

Today, colossal art is still looked upon as a wonder. To see what I mean, click here. I discovered Colossal: Art & Visual Culture not too long ago, and every time I go back for a visit, I am amazed!

Monday, December 16, 2013

No Monkeys, No Chocolate

No Monkeys, No Chocolate is a new nonfiction title by Massachusetts writer, Melissa Stewart [J 633.74 STE]. It tells of the interdependence of species in South America, in this case, monkeys, cocao (the seeds, called beans, of which go into making chocolate), and a whole host of other insects and plants.

Ms. Stewart has developed a marvelous online page explaining the path No Monkeys, No Chocolate took from idea to physical book. You can view the multi-leveled timeline here.

To learn how we get chocolate from cocoa beans, here's a short video on the process of making chocolate.

Friday, December 13, 2013

Poetry Friday--"The Sniffle"

A little silliness for today! Being as it's the season of colds, here's "The Sniffle" by Ogden Nash.
In spite of her sniffle
Isabel's chiffle.
Some girls with a sniffle
Would be weepy and tiffle;
They would look awful,
Like a rained-on waffle,
But Isabel's chiffle
In spite of her sniffle.
Her nose is more red
With a cold in her head,
But then, to be sure,
Her eyes are bluer.
Some girls with a snuffle,
Their tempers are uffle.
But when Isabel's snivelly
She's snivelly civilly,
And when she's snuffly
She's perfectly luffly.
I found this poem in Poetry Out Loud edited by Robert Alden Rubin [821.008 POE]. The selection is a good one for performing out loud, and one of the helpful hints accompanying the poem the "meaning" of the slightly odd words, for example, chiffle = cheerful. Now with that in mind, reread the poem more slowly and see if you can figure out the other oddities!

More Ogden Nash nonsense can be found here:

Today the Poetry Friday Round-Up is being hosted by Tabatha Yeatts. If you haven't visited Tabatha's blog before, take some time to browse through past posts--you're in for a treat of poetry, art, and music!

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Crunch Time!

Wow! It's less than two weeks until Christmas. Time to bake cookies! Get the kids involved, too! These books are just what you need to get started:

Fryer, Janice. Cookie Craft Christmas Dozens of Decorating Ideas for a Sweet Holiday. [3M ebook]

Holiday Entertaining Essentials: Christmas Cookies Delicious Ideas for Easy Holiday Celebrations. [3M ebook]

La Penta, Marilyn. Cool Cookies. [J 641.8654 LAP]

Mueller, Stephanie R. 101 Great Gifts Kids Can Make. [J 745.5 MUE]

Perelman, Deb. The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook. [641.5 PER]

Price, Pamela S. Cool Cookies & Bars: Easy Recipes for Kids to Bake. [J 641.8 PRI]

Also, we have a new picture book called Mouse's Christmas Cookie by Patrica Thomas [JP THO], which is just right for sharing with the little ones in your family.

Photo of author, Pat Thomas, reading her book, courtesy Kinder Kapers.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Occupied Paris

Back in September, the British newspaper, the Daily Mail, ran an online feature, "Paris through a Nazi's lens: Propaganda pictures of Occupied France taken by photographer ordered to prove city was thriving under German rule." It contains pages and pages of color photos, such as this one, of the city and its inhabitants:

Paris may have been bustling, but it was not necessarily a happy or safe place. One novel that shows the other side of the city during the war is Trapeze by Simon Mawer [F MAW, also AB/CD MAW]. It is the story of a young British woman who is trained as a spy and sent to France, and then to Paris.
The danger of Paris is a cancer within you, invisible, imponderable, and probably incurable.
A great read! I recommend it highly.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013


If you own a cat, you know it's nearly impossible to do anything on or near the floor without your cat developing a keen interest and deciding to join you in whatever it is you're trying to do. Exercise is no different.

If it bothers you to do exercises in tandem with cats, maybe there is a way to "purrsuade" them to develop other interests. Outsmarting Cats: How to Persuade the Felines in Your Life to Do What You Want by Wendy Christensen [636.8 CHR] may be the key! Honestly, I've never known a cat to do anything it doesn't want to do, so good luck!

Monday, December 09, 2013

Shopping Mall Blues

If you've been to the mall lately, you've probably found that it is chocky-block full of harried shoppers and screaming kids. Rather than let it stress you out, though, you can envision the mall in this way:

Now wasn't that fun? Of course you recognize this as a take-off of the chase scene from the 1980 movie, The Blue Brothers, starring Jim Belushi and Dan Ackroyd. And, now you have "I Can't Turn You Loose," running through your head, right? If so, come borrow The Blues Brothers [CD BLUES BLU] to cure you of that ear-worm!

Friday, December 06, 2013

Poetry Friday--It's St. Nicholas Day!

Today is St. Nicholas Day in many countries. St. Nicholas is the forerunner of the character we know as Santa Claus. Let's celebrate St. Nicholas Day with a poem.

From Hans Brinker, or, the Silver Skates, Chapter 9. "The Festival of St. Nicholas"
by Mary Mapes Dodge

Welcome, friend! St. Nicholas, welcome!
   Bring no rod for us to-night!
While our voices bid thee welcome,
   Every heart with joy is light.

     "Tell us every fault and failing;
     We will bear thy keenest railing
     So we sing, so we sing:
     Thou shalt tell us everything!

"Welcome, friend! St. Nicholas, welcome!
   Welcome to this merry band!
Happy children greet thee, welcome!
   Thou art gladdening all the land.

     "Fill each empty hand and basket;
     'Tis thy little ones who ask it.
     So we sing, so we sing:
     Thou wilt bring us everything!"
Hans Brinker, or, the Silver Skates was first published in 1865! We have a more recent copy in our children's room [J DOD].

Stop off at the local bakery and indulge in a sweet treat--St. Nicholas would want you to! After that, head over to Life on the Deckle Edge for the Poetry Friday Round-Up.

Image courtesy Wikimedia Commons..

Thursday, December 05, 2013

There's Always Something New to Learn!

If you celebrate Christmas you probably think you know all there is to know about the holiday, however, if you read through "Ten Things You Might Not Know about Christmas" by T. Steelman, you may discover something new!

Number 10 came as a surprise to me, "Santa’s reindeer are based upon the eight-legged Sleipnir, the Norse god Woden’s flying horse."

To learn about reindeer, real or imaginary, look for one of these on your next visit:

Arnold, Caroline. Reindeer. [JP ARN]

Bernhard, Emery. Reindeer. [J 599.73 BER]

Brett, Jan. The Wild Christmas Reindeer. [JP BRE]

Markovics, Joyce L. Caribou and Reindeer, Too. [J 599.658 MAR]

May, Robert Lewis. Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer. [JP MAY]

Prancer. [DVD PRA]

Sullivan, Robert. Flight of the Reindeer: The True Story of Santa Claus and His Christmas Mission. [J 394.2663 SUL]

Wednesday, December 04, 2013

Buying Books for Holiday Gift-Giving

Last Saturday was the day designated as Small Business Saturday. Many people went to their local independent bookseller to purchase books for holiday gift-giving. One such person is President Obama, who was accompanied by his family, and a score of reporters. The purchases made contained some recent bestsellers and a few oldies, but goodies. Here's the list (as was reported by the White House); the ones we own include their call number, the ones we don't own are on order:

Becker, Aaron. Journey. [JP BEC]

Blackwood, Sage. Jinx. [J BLA]

Cather, Willa. My Antonia. [F CAT, also 3M ebook]

Dawidoff, Nicholas. Collision Low Crossers: A Year Inside the Turbulent World of NFL Football.

DiCamillo, Kate. Flora and Ulysses. [J DIC, also 3M ebook]

Doctorow, E. L. Ragtime. [F DOC]

Epstein, David. The Sports Gene: Inside the Science of Extraordinary Athletic Performance. [613.71 EPS, also 3M ebook]

Hosseini, Khaled. The Kite Runner. [F HOS, AB/CD HOS, also 3M ebook]

Johnson, Crockett. Harold and the Purple Crayon. [JP JOH]

Lahiri, Jhumpa. The Lowland. [F LAH, AB/CD LAH, also 3M ebook]

Marra, Anthony. A Constellation of Vital Phenomena. [F MAR, also 3M ebook]

Matthews, Jason. Red Sparrow.

McCullers, Carson. Ballad of the Sad Cafe: And Other Stories. [in Complete Novels F MCC]

Oppel, Kenneth. Half Brother. [YA OPP]

Otsuka, Julie. Buddha in the Attic. [F OTS, AB/CD OTS, also 3M ebook]

Preus, Margi. Heart of a Samurai: Based on the True Story of Nakahama Manjiro. [YA PRE]

Rex, Adam. Moonday.

Riddell, Chris. Ottoline and the Yellow Cat. [J MYS RID]

Salter, James. All That Is. [F SAL, AB/CD SAL, also 3M ebook]

Strayed, Cheryl. Wild: From Lost to Found On the Pacific Crest Trail. [B STR, AB/CD B STR, also 3M ebook]

Viorst, Judith and Lane Smith. Lulu and the Brontosaurus. [J VIO]

You can "test-drive" a book at the Library before purchasing a copy as a gift!

Tuesday, December 03, 2013

Read It Before the Movie Comes Out

There are a number of literature-based films opening in the next few months. You may want to read the books before watching the movies.

Here are three of them:

The Wolf of Wall Street by Jordan Belfort [332.62 BEL, also 3M ebook] will be out on Christmas Day.

Joyce Maynard's novel, Labor Day [F MAY], is scheduled for limited release on December 27, and it should be opening locally the last week in January.

Winter's Tale based on the novel by Mark Helprin [F HEL] is coming out on Valentine's Day, so you know you're in for a romantic treat!

Monday, December 02, 2013

Thinking Imaginatively

The creators of this short video, Kyra and Constantin, certainly have a different way of looking at things--"If all animals became round overnight, would their daily life still run that smoothly?" The idea has definitely taken hold of their imaginations, because the above clip is only one in a series of round animal videos that can be found at Rollin' Wild.

Children's authors and illustrators are not afraid to let their imaginations carry them away. If you need proof, look for one of these on your next visit:

Barrett, Judi. Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs. [JP BAR]

Bishop, Claire Huchet. The Five Chinese Brothers. [JP BIS]

Lord, John Vernon. The Giant Jam Sandwich. [JP LOR]

Perry, Sarah. If... [JP PER]

Shannon, David. A Bad Case of Stripes. [JP SHA]

Small, David. Imogene's Antlers. [JP SMA]

Wiesner, David. Art & Max. [JP WIE]